OREMUS: 16 January 2007

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Mon Jan 15 17:00:00 GMT 2007

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OREMUS for Tuesday, January 16, 2007 
Charles Gore, Bishop, Founder of the Community of the Resurrection, 1932

O Lord, open our lips.
And our mouth shall proclaim your praise.

Blessed are you, God of steadfast love,
turning the mundane into profound
to give us delight and wonder in the unexpected.
You transform our hearts by your Spirit,
that we may use our varied gifts
to show forth the light of your love
as one body in Christ. 
For these and all your mercies, we praise you:
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
Blessed be God for ever!

An opening canticle may be sung. 


Psalm 25

To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul;
   my God, I put my trust in you;*
 let me not be humiliated,
   nor let my enemies triumph over me.
Let none who look to you be put to shame;*
 let the treacherous be disappointed in their schemes.
Show me your ways, O Lord,*
 and teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth and teach me,*
 for you are the God of my salvation;
   in you have I trusted all the day long.
Remember, O Lord, your compassion and love,*
 for they are from everlasting.
Remember not the sins of my youth
   and my transgressions;*
 remember me according to your love
   and for the sake of your goodness, O Lord.
Gracious and upright is the Lord;*
 therefore he teaches sinners in his way.
He guides the humble in doing right*
 and teaches his way to the lowly.
All the paths of the Lord are love and faithfulness*
 to those who keep his covenant and his testimonies.
For your name's sake, O Lord,*
 forgive my sin, for it is great.
Who are they who fear the Lord?*
 he will teach them the way that they should choose.
They shall dwell in prosperity,*
 and their offspring shall inherit the land.
The Lord is a friend to those who fear him*
 and will show them his covenant.
My eyes are ever looking to the Lord,*
 for he shall pluck my feet out of the net.
Turn to me and have pity on me,*
 for I am left alone and in misery.
The sorrows of my heart have increased;*
 bring me out of my troubles.
Look upon my adversity and misery*
 and forgive me all my sin.
Look upon my enemies, for they are many,*
 and they bear a violent hatred against me.
Protect my life and deliver me;*
 let me not be put to shame, for I have trusted in you.
Let integrity and uprightness preserve me,*
 for my hope has been in you.
Deliver Israel, O God,*
 out of all his troubles.

A Song of the Wilderness (Isaiah 35.1,2b-4a,4c-6,10)

The wilderness and the dry land shall rejoice,
the desert shall blossom and burst into song.

They shall see the glory of the Lord,
the majesty of our God.

Strengthen the weary hands,
and make firm the feeble knees.

Say to the anxious, 'Be strong, fear not,
your God is coming with judgement,
coming with judgement to save you.'

Then shall the eyes of the blind be opened,
and the ears of the deaf unstopped;

Then shall the lame leap like a hart,
and the tongue of the dumb sing for joy.

For waters shall break forth in the wilderness,
and streams in the desert;

The ransomed of the Lord shall return with singing,
with everlasting joy upon their heads.

Joy and gladness shall be theirs,
and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.

Psalm 146

   Praise the Lord, O my soul!*
 I will praise the Lord as long as I live;
   I will sing praises to my God while I have my being.
Put not your trust in rulers,
   nor in any child of earth,*
 for there is no help in them.
When they breathe their last, they return to earth,*
 and in that day their thoughts perish.
Happy are they who have the God of Jacob
   for their help!*
 whose hope is in the Lord their God;
Who made heaven and earth, the seas,
   and all that is in them;*
 who keeps his promise for ever;
Who gives justice to those who are oppressed,*
 and food to those who hunger.
The Lord sets the prisoners free;
   the Lord opens the eyes of the blind;*
 the Lord lifts up those who are bowed down;
The Lord loves the righteous;
   the Lord cares for the stranger;*
 he sustains the orphan and widow,
   but frustrates the way of the wicked.
The Lord shall reign for ever,*
 your God, O Zion, throughout all generations.

FIRST READING [Song of Solomon 4:9-5:1]:

You have ravished my heart, my sister, my bride,
   you have ravished my heart with a glance of your eyes,
   with one jewel of your necklace.
How sweet is your love, my sister, my bride!
   how much better is your love than wine,
   and the fragrance of your oils than any spice!
Your lips distil nectar, my bride;
   honey and milk are under your tongue;
   the scent of your garments is like the scent of Lebanon.
A garden locked is my sister, my bride,
   a garden locked, a fountain sealed.
Your channel is an orchard of pomegranates
   with all choicest fruits,
   henna with nard,
nard and saffron, calamus and cinnamon,
   with all trees of frankincense,
myrrh and aloes,
   with all chief spices 
a garden fountain, a well of living water,
   and flowing streams from Lebanon.

Awake, O north wind,
   and come, O south wind!
Blow upon my garden
   that its fragrance may be wafted abroad.
Let my beloved come to his garden,
   and eat its choicest fruits.

I come to my garden, my sister, my bride;
   I gather my myrrh with my spice,
   I eat my honeycomb with my honey,
   I drink my wine with my milk.

Eat, friends, drink,
   and be drunk with love.

Words:   Marnie Barrell, 1989
Tune: St. Catherine's Court

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Come to the celebration, all who are hungry,
the best wine is ready, and the loaves of bread;
here he comes, the bridegroom, to welcome the people,
to share out the food and see that all are fed.

Who is invited to the house of the bridegroom,
to live while the dead are left to bury the dead?
Beggars from the roadside, amazed at the asking,
are called to the table where the feast is spread.

What kind of party is this wedding reception?
The first are the last and yet the last are first.
Royal guests of honour are standing and waiting
until all the servants satisfy their thirst.

When shall we come along to share in the feasting?
The day is today, the doors are open wide.
Endless the rejoicing at this celebration -
the Lord is the bridegroom, and his Church the bride.

Come empty-handed when you come to the table;
the drink flows forever, there is ample food.
Taste the wine of heaven and never be thirsty,
and see, as we break the bread, that God is good!

SECOND READING [Luke 5:33-39]:

The Pharisees and their scribes said to Jesus, 'John's disciples, like the disciples of the
Pharisees, frequently fast and pray, but your disciples eat and drink.' Jesus said to
them, 'You cannot make wedding-guests fast while the bridegroom is with them, can
you? The days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them, and then
they will fast in those days.' He also told them a parable: 'No one tears a piece from a
new garment and sews it on an old garment; otherwise the new will be torn, and the
piece from the new will not match the old. And no one puts new wine into old
wineskins; otherwise the new wine will burst the skins and will be spilled, and the skins
will be destroyed. But new wine must be put into fresh wineskins. And no one after
drinking old wine desires new wine, but says, "The old is good." '

The Benedictus (Morning), 
the Magnificat (Evening), or 
Nunc dimittis (Night) may follow.

O God our Salvation, you are near to all who call:
hear and answer our prayers.

You are a refuge for the oppressed;
be our stronghold in troubled times.

You stand at the right hand of the needy;
rescue all who are wrongfully condemned.

You raise the poor from the dust;
restore dignity to those who seek refuge.

You give food to the hungry;
uphold the cause of the destitute.

You watch over those who wander and sustain the widow;
provide protection in the face of danger.

You heal the brokenhearted;
bind up the wounds of all who suffer.

You call us to be your Church,
send us out to do your will in the world.

You are a mighty God who loves justice;
establish your equity for all people.

Praise be to you, O Lord;
you hear and answer our prayers.

Eternal God, 
your Son, Jesus Christ, now exalted as Lord of all, 
pours out his gifts on the church: 
Grant us that unity which your Spirit gives, 
keep us in the bond of peace, 
and bring all creation to worship before your throne; 
through Jesus Christ our Redeemer, 
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, 
one God, now and forever. Amen. 
O God, our heavenly Father, 
who raised up your faithful servant Charles Gore 
to be a bishop and pastor in your Church 
and to feed your flock: 
Give abundantly to all pastors 
the gifts of your Holy Spirit, 
that they may minister in your household 
as true servants of Christ 
and stewards of your divine mysteries; 
through Jesus Christ our Lord, 
who lives and reigns with you
and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Rejoicing in the presence of God here among us,
let us pray in faith and trust:

- The Lord's Prayer

Stir us with your voice
and enlighten our lives with your grace
that we may give ourselves fully
to Christ's call to mission and ministry. Amen.

The psalms and the invitation to the Lord's Prayer are from _Celebrating Common
Prayer_ (Mowbray), (c) The Society of Saint Francis 1992, which is used with

The canticle is from _Common Worship: Daily Prayer, Preliminary
Edition_, copyright (c) The Archbishops' Council, 2002.

The biblical passage is from The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized
Edition), copyright (c) 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education
of  the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA. Used by
permission. All rights reserved.

The opening prayer of thanksgiving and the closing sentence are adapted from
prayers reprinted from _Revised Common Lectionary Prayers_,
copyright (c) 2002 Consultation on Common Texts.

Charles Gore was born in Wimbledon in 1853 in an aristocratic family. After
the death of Edward Pusey (see BIO at 18 September), a library and study
center was established at Oxford in 1883, known as Pusey House, and Gore
became its first Principal, a position he held until 1893. His appointment raised
some eyebrows, since Gore was known to be friendly to what was called the
Higher Criticism, which favored non-traditional views on the authorship of
some books of the Old Testament.
book on the origins of the Christian Ministry and its development in the first
two centuries of the Christian era. In the same year, he wrote ROMAN
CATHOLIC CLAIMS, a reply to assertions that the Anglican Church was not
the true successor of the New Testament Church. In 1889, he helped to found
the Christian Social Union (he was one of the two Vice-Presidents), dedicated
to promoting the view that Christian principles as applied to the political and
economic organization of society demanded reform along trade-unionist and
moderate socialist lines. His political views aroused some public protest.
Considerably more protest was aroused, however, by the publication, also
in 1889, of a book called LUX MUNDI (meaning "Light of the World"): A
book was a set of essays by various writers. Gore was the general editor, and
contributed one essay. Overall, the book expressed the belief of many educated
Christians that Biblical and archaeological studies and scientific discoveries had
made it necessary for the Church to re-examine and perhaps restate some of its
traditional formulations. The book was a sensation, and considered by many to
be less a restatement than an abandonment of traditional doctrines. Gore's
essay was called, "On the Inspiration of Holy Scripture." He distinguished
sharply between the Old and New Testaments, saying that the New Testament
accounts were either eye-witness or close to eye-witness accounts of the
events described, while we had reason to suppose that some Old Testament
accounts were written centuries after the event, and were not reliable sources
of factual detail. Their value is not as a revelation of historical of scientific
information, but as a revelation of God's nature and his dealings with us.
Earlier, in 1887, Gore had founded the Society of the Resurrection, an
association for priests, aimed at a deepening of the spiritual life. In July 1892
this became the Community of the Resurrection, a religious order for priests,
beginning with six members. The members declared their intention of
remaining celibate for life, but took vows of celibacy for only one year at a
time, rather than taking a vow binding for life.
In 1901 he wrote THE BODY OF CHRIST, dealing with the Sacrament of the
Lord's Supper, asserting and defending the doctrine that Christ is objectively
present in the Sacrament, and that the Sacrament is a sacrificial offering, but
repudiating certain late mediaeval innovations in worship, such as Processions
of the Sacrament, unknown to the Primitive Church.
As tension increased between the British government and the Boer republics of
South Africa, Gore denounced British Imperialism, and when war began in
1899 he denounced the British policy of rounding up Boer civilians in
detention camps, where the mortality rate was very high. Gore was
consecrated Bishop of Worcester in February 1902. The diocese included the
city of Birmingham, which had been tiny or non-existent when the dioceses of
England were organized, but which had grown to become a large industrial
city. Gore saw that the needs of Birmingham and of the surrounding rural areas
were quite different, and immediately began to urge a division. Chamberlain,
who had come to respect and admire Gore, helped steer the necessary
legislation through Parliament. In 1905 Birmingham was organized as a
separate bishopric and Gore became its first bishop. In 1911 he was transferred
and became Bishop of Oxford instead. In the next few years, several Anglican
clergy publicly declared that an Anglican might reasonably deny the Virgin
Birth and the physical Resurrection of Christ and remain an Anglican. Gore
was horrified, and proposed to resign his bishopric so as to devote himself to
contending against a position that he believed to be destructive of all Christian
faith. His friends persuaded him to reconsider.
After World War I, Gore resigned his bishopric and retired in July 1919, being
66 years old. He was flooded with invitations to speak or preach and published
several books. In November of 1930, he began a six-month tour of India,
preaching and lecturing pretty much in every district in the country, "speaking
whenever he was not walking, riding, or sleeping." He returned home totally
exhausted. From then on his health deteriorated. In January 1932 he acquired a
sever cough, and then pneumonia. On Friday 15 he was still able to write a few
postcards to friends. Then he fell into a coma, and died on the morning of
Sunday 17 January 1932. His influence remains great. [James Kiefer, abridged]

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